Friday, 8 August 2014

Folklore ~ Photographs ~ A Summer Storm a Comin' In ~

Gentle Reader ~ do you have folk lore sayings that you have known for years?  Do you know what they mean?  Very often, the things we say today by way of tradition have very deep rooted meanings and interpretations in many things, like nature and plain common sense.  I would love it if you share some of your favourites in the comments box ~~~ and here are just a few of my own ~~~ 

A lot of my friends say "Rabbit Rabbit" on the first day of each month, but until recently I had never heard of it.  I always grew up with, what I consider a less pleasant saying that goes 

"A pinch and a punch for the first of the month"

 ~ not very pretty, is it?  Often, it was responded to with 

"A punch and a kick for being so quick"

 ~ again, not very pretty.  However, the first part dates back to the Middle Ages {maybe earlier} in Britain when witchcraft gave reason for fear among the general population and this little saying was to ward off witches ~ the "pinch" was a pinch of salt, long held in belief that it weakened the power of a witch if thrown at him/her and the "punch" was the shove to push the witch out of the way after the pinch of salt had weakened the powers.  So, throw the 'pinch' of salt, weaken the witch, then 'punch' it out of the way ~~~

Another interpretation is that the pinch may be a pinch of snuff and the punch a cup of punch as traditional offerings to callers and well wishers who stopped by the houses of local gentry over the Christmas season and New Year's morn ~~~ I prefer this interpretation to the witchy one for it is more convivial ~~~

Folklore is a strange and intriguing thing indeed ~~~

"Red sky at night ~ shepherd's {or sailor's} delight
Red sky in morning ~ shepherd's {or sailor's} warning"

This little adage, apparently, has to do with the sun as it reflects off clouds, and if the clouds are red at night then the following day will be fine, but if they are red in the morning, the coming day will not be fine.  Simple! 

Here is a gardening snippet for you ~

"One year's seeds are seven years weeds"

 ~ very true ~ for seeds, once sown, can remain dormant in the soil for many years, so the seeds sown by all your weeds this year, some will germinate next year, and the rest will take their time, watching and waiting, then bursting forth just when you think your garden is free from all the plants you don't want there ~~~

Here, my gentle friends, are some seeds that have sown and are not weeds at all ~~~

I love Japanese Wind Anemones, for they provide colour and interest in the garden as Summer starts to turn into Autumn and all the hot colours of Summer are quickly fading out ~~~ the blazing lilies, the fragrant roses, crocosmia, and more are making those seeds for seven years of sowing!

These are my white Japanese Wind Anemones, their late blooming, single white flowers on whispy, willowy, whippy, long and elegant stems grow from a bushy mound of mat, dark green leaves, but with a lot of blooms growing and preparing to burst open in succession to give a good show over many weeks ~~~ they will provide colour and interest as the garden starts the winding down from Summer into Autumn, with elegant, dancing, movement in the breezes ~~~

Look at all the blooms ready to follow very soon for a grand display ~~~ oh! and if you find the perfect spot for this hardy perennial, it will spread and thrive, filling the space it inhabits ~~~

I have several new specimens coming along in pots ready to plant for next year to give a wider variety of these lovely flowers ~~~ pinks, blues, and colour~tipped whites ~~~

While I was doing some tedious, yet therapeutic and much needed dead~heading, I was serenaded by a beautiful robin ~~~ it took me some time to find him, but I followed his song and there he was, perched in the tree, just above my head, singing his heart out with his pretty song ~~~

The roses, all of them, are now almost over and the next stage of colour is growing ~~~ do you remember the beautiful, big clusters of single blooms earlier in the Summer with all that delicious scented fragrance ~~~

Well, now the flowers are spent and the hips are green and growing and soon will be orangey~red giving colour and interest for the Winter and attracting birds that may feed upon the Vitamin C rich fruits ~~~

Already, the rosehips of the rosa rugosa are swelling and reddening, ripening fruits of the Autumn hedgerow

and preparing a bold, bright splash of colour against the leaves until the fall ~~~

A butterfly sits and waits ~~~ for what?

I love the way this courgette peeks through the hairy stems, and the flower twists in a curl at the top ~~~

The carrot tops are now clear the rim of the bin in which they grow ~~~ if the roots are half as good as the tops they will do well ~~~

of course, I cannot resist another photograph of a foxglove flower ~~~

see how dry and parched the lawn is, yellow from lack of water, but the shrubbery is looking green ~~~ I have plans to take cuttings from the pink wall germander growing in the foreground, and the hips on the roses will soon provide a change of colour ~~~ do you see my two, original and old mill stones?

Rain always provides a willing subject on a stem or leaf or web ~~~

Butterfly eggs appeared on a nasturtium leaf ~ exposed and vulnerable on the upper surface too!  I do not know what sort they are, but I left them in peace ~~~

Tiny, single, bright yellow eggs of another sort of butterfly laid in the protection afforded by the underside of the same leaf ~~~

A hoverfly feeds on the fragrant flowers of my apple mint ~~~

One of my favourite photographs of a bowl full of fresh picked produce from the garden ~ mixed leaves, tomatoes, courgettes ~ sitting in front of my home made jams and jars of herbs ~~~

Gentle Reader ~~~ the weather for the weekend is dire, for the tail end of Hurricane Bertha will drop in for a quick visit ~~~ hopefully she will pass through quickly and to the south of us, and the winds and rain will not be as bad as we have been told to expect ~~~ we are advised to continue watching the situation as the Met Office continues to assess and track the storm ~ however, just in case, I am preparing recipes for using up my courgettes and green tomatoes if the bushes do not survive the onslaught ~~~ we will see ~~~ and that, gentle friends, is the reason why ~~~ 

~~~ A Gardener's Work Is Never Done ~~~


  1. Debs, I feel like I've been to the English/Wales countryside when I visit your blog! I love your pretty and stunning in every way! I would never have known that those were butterfly eggs if I saw them on my plants! Do you do something with the rose hips? I always thought you were supposed to deadhead once the blooms were gone? I know of no little sayings to share....hmmm? I'm sure something will come to me after I'm done here. Thank you for such a wonderful treat today! xoxo....Karen

    1. Why, thank you Karen! Have you visited my other blogs? No, I have not done anything with the rosehips, I leave them for the birds as winter treats ~ a small reward for the pleasure they bring visiting the Garden in the cold, dark months. Waving ~~~

  2. Donna E. @ My Wells of Fancy8 August 2014 at 20:07

    What a lovely tour of your beautiful garden! Have you ever dried/harvested your rosehips for tea? And, that hoverfly is beautiful! It amazes me how these little garden visitors "sit" for you! Thank you for sharing them with us! ~ Donna E. =)

    1. Hello Donna! No, I have never dried them. I just leave them for the birds in Winter. Oh, I have to take many, many photographs to get one viable image, they are not easy to capture at all! Waving ~~~

  3. Hi Debs! Each year, when I took my young students to visit a living history museum, they were surprised to learn the meaning of two very common sayings… "Sleep tight, don't let the bedbugs bite" comes from the days of rope beds, which had to be tightened with a special tool so that the mattress wouldn't sag. The mattress was like a huge pillowcase stuffed with corn leaves, grass, etc. and often tiny creatures would jump in! Every day in class, we would talk about 'Upper Case and Lower Case' letters. In the old print shop, printers stored the capital letters in the top case and the small letters in the lower case, so that they could find them quickly to set the type. It's such fun to discover the real meanings behind our common sayings!
    It was so lovely to walk through your garden today. Your foxglove is gorgeous! My anemones bloom in early Spring. I'm so happy to learn that other varieties bloom late in the summer garden. Hope I can find some! I love the delicate dance they do in the gentle breeze! Sending wishes for a safe weekend, Debs. Hope the wild weather stays far away!

    1. Good Morning Dawn ~~~ I'm shuddering at the thought of that mattress! Isn't it interesting though, where commonplace sayings originate? Thank you for these!
      I'm wondering if your anemones are like the ones I lost? Small, closer to the ground ~ for these Japanese Wind ones are quite tall, around three and a half to four foot in height. Waving ~~~

  4. I'm just getting caught up in my Blog reading. I've been doing a lot of weeding, deadheading and planting in my garden this past week. This is the time of year our home improvement store marks down plants. I bought 3 Delphinium that were originally $20 each for $3 each and a $29 rose bush for $5! They all look perfectly healthy to me--at least as good as my plants in my garden look. My Hollyhock has rust :-( and my new climbing rose has black spot. I really hate to use chemicals, so I've always let the bugs and diseases have their way if pinching doesn't work. But I think I need to start doing some reading and see what I can do about these unsightly problems. Your garden is lovely as always. I love your photos!

    1. Rust and black spot are a scourge! I lost my hollyhock and must start over again. You certainly got some bargains there, and I love a bargain! Who doesn't? Enjoy your blog reading catching up! Waving ~~~

  5. Hello dear Deborah... sooo good to hear from you too!... I have enjoyed catching up on your posts... your photos are just stunning!... sounds like you are as excited as I am for Autumn... such a glorious time of year. I especially love love love your photo of your homemade jams and bottles of herbs along with your fresh veggies... I just bought the new issue of Victoria magazine... it is the English edition and lots on Wales!... xoxo Julie Marie

  6. It is so lovely to see you return Julie Marie ~ Oh, excited for Autumn is an understatement indeed ~ Powis Castle is featured in the latest Victoria, and that is the castle where my late Daddy was a gamekeeper! Waving ~~~


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